“Yet you, Lord, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand.”
As one of the most talented athletes in the world, Kyle Snyder has carved for himself one of the most successful wrestling careers ever. Through being the youngest to ever win the world, NCAA, and Olympic championships in 2016, being a three time NCAA champion, winning two Yarygin titles, and being the youngest to win a Yarygin title ( a wrestling tournament considered to be one of the toughest in the world), he’s earned his reputation as being one of the best in the world. As he racked up awards for himself and become one of the most feared to ever come across the mat, he says it is his faith that keeps him grounded and winning championships.Born in Woodbyne, Maryland, Kyle Snyder says it wasn’t until later in his life that faith became an important part of who he is. “I started looking into faith when I was a senior in high school. I started committing to God in a real way when I was a freshman in college.” That faith became a backbone for Snyder, guiding and comforting him through the pressure, wins, and losses that come with being a wrestler. As Snyder began to look towards the toughest competition he had ever faced, faith became a guiding factor in keeping him grounded and focused on the moment at hand. Since making his faith a priority, Snyder says he has continued to grow and it is his trust in God that keeps him wrestling at such a high level. “Everything that I do is by faith. Christianity is an every second of everyday thing. We are called to take up our cross and follow the Lord daily. Every morning I wake up with a mindset desiring His will to be done. God knows a lot more about wrestling than I do. I ask Him to lead me to wrestle the way that He wants me too. I also ask that He give my coaches wisdom and my training partners the ability to wrestle the way that I need them too so I can compete the way He wants me too.” Snyder says God has also used wrestling to teach him about the important parts of life and what it is that matters most in it all. “I always ask myself, ‘what does God want me to learn from this?’ He is training all of us through everything we do to trust in Him in a deeper way.”
Through his successful career, whether it was the NCAA, Olympics, or professional competitions, Snyder has faced the best athletes in the world. He credits his faith for keeping him focused on what matters most in the grand scheme of things. “I have been able to travel all around the world and wrestle at the highest level. I have also been blessed with the chance to train and be mentored by great people throughout my career. God has been shaping me into the person I am today in all of these things.” Snyder emphasizes how God is continuing to mold him into who he is called to be. “God says we are the clay and He is the Potter. I stay focused on Him and then He continues to teach me and mature me. It really doesn’t matter what the experience is, but more so it is the mindset of the person. Two people can do the same thing and one will grow closer to the Lord while the other pushes away. Thank God He has brought me closer. “
That mindset for Snyder has led him to where he is today. While he continues to be one of the most talented athletes in the world, Snyder says wrestling isn’t what matters most. Since making faith an important part of his life, Snyder has committed to living his life for a purpose greater than himself. That has helped aid Kyle Snyder in becoming such a role model for so many. Even as he holds Olympic Gold in his hand, he remains humble and focused on what matters most; glorifying God through it all.